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In Defense of Bacon

There is a difference between quality and quantity. Especially when it comes to fat.

Back in the 1980's, the line between quality of fat, and quantity of fat, became blurred. I think it had something to do with the fact that fat has almost double the calories per gram than carbohydrates or protein, and when the people-who-tell-us-what-to-eat learned that, they decided fat was bad for us. As if calories are inherently evil and fat, having more calories, is bad. More calories = weight gain, or so they thought in that overly simplistic model. It didn't help that they were lumping processed vegetable oils together with natural animal fats.

There was also a theory pushed by the sugar industry that fat causes heart disease, particularly animal fats. That idea has been debunked, yet most Americans still believe it to this day.

I have always loved fat, but as a kid I was duped by the low-fat movement. I tried to cut out as much fat as I could, obliviously eating high sugar foods instead, and foods that were laced with all kinds of chemicals.

Do you think I was skinny at that time?

More importantly, do you eat a low fat diet, and has it helped you reach your weight loss goals?

Enter Real Fat. The kind that is good for you. The kind that was grown the way nature intended. The kind that your body needs and loves. The kind that reduces inflammation rather than causing it. When I started eating real fats like lard and butter (instead of shortening and margarine), avocados, crispy chicken skin, olives, whole raw milk, and yes the big one, BACON, do you know what happened? I lost weight. For one thing, I didn't eat as much because my body was no longer craving something it wasn't getting. And eating healthy fat helps heal the gut, which in my opinion is the most important step towards becoming healthy.

There is such a difference between quality and quantity. I'm not saying you should go out and eat a whole box of donuts because the amount of fat doesn't matter (not to mention the refined sugar). I'm saying, if the fat is wholesome and from a good source (good quality), it's good for you. If the fat is processed, hydrogenated, bleached, rancid (which most processed oils are), laced with pesticide, from genetically modified organisms (bad quality), then of course that fat is bad for you. But it's not because fat is inherently bad, it's because it was grown and processed in a way that makes it bad.

So is bacon good or bad? That all depends. In fact, the majority of bacon is probably bad. Because the majority of bacon comes from pigs that were raised in a factory, never basked in mud and sunlight, never ate a green leaf or a bug, and grew super fast. The pork belly from them is pumped full of chemicals, flavorings, and preservatives. It's nutrient poor, and probably has traces of chemicals and pesticides from the pig factory. But, if your bacon is from healthy pigs that were raised on pasture, and if you know exactly what wholesome ingredients turned that pork belly into bacon, then YES, it is good for you!! Eat it. Eat all you like. The fat is loaded with healthy vitamin D and other fat soluble nutrients. Save the fat (lard) that renders out and cook with it. It is so much better for you than vegetable oils made from corn, soy, or cottonseed.

People who follow the keto diet know that when you eat fat and protien rather than carbs, your body burns its fat. Another way to encourage your body to burn fat is to practice fasting regularly.

It all comes down to quality. Eat good quality, and trust yourself that quantity will take care of itself. Don't worry about counting grams of fat. Eat healthy, be healthy. You will get full faster because your body has what it needs. Chances are, you won't consume more calories by eating more fat (not that calories are inherently evil). One of the best perks of eating healthy, whole foods is that the body begins to self regulate. It tells you when to stop eating. No more chasing your tail in circles trying to eat less and lose weight. Your body wants to be healthy, and when you start giving it whole, nutrient dense foods and stop giving it sugary, processed foods, you will find that you reach a healthy weight naturally. I did.

Now excuse me, I have some bacon to tend to...

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